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Lydden Hill, near Canterbury, hosted day one of its first-ever FIA World Rallycross Championship event today with nearly 50 busy races

By Dan Wright

The first day of Lydden Hill's prestigious FIA World Rallycross Championship round was full of thrills and spills from start to finish.

A record 37 Supercars took to the one-mile circuit and were welcomed by typical Kentish weather, as heavy showers and sunny spells made track conditions unpredictable - but helped produce fantastic action.

Andrew Jordan reached the FIA World Rallycross Championship podium at Lydden in 2014. Picture: Joe Wright

With nearly 50 races to get through across the four categories, it was current British Touring Car champion Andrew Jordan who showed best of the British contingent, despite suffering a puncture in heat one.

Sittingbourne's Liam Doran had a tough first day as a jump start and mechanical gremlins slowed him in heats one and two.

Toomas Heikkinen impressed in the Kentish countryside. Picture: Joe Wright

But Norwegian Andreas Bakkerud had the best time of all in his Ford Fiesta, as he enters day two top of the Supercar table.

He was closely followed by American Tanner Foust - who showed fantastic car control in his all-new VW Polo - with Finn Toomas Heikkinen third on the time sheet.

American Tanner Foust has previously starred at Lydden. Picture: Joe Wright

Popular Petter Solberg recovered from a poor start in heat one to take fourth in the times, whilst Jordan sits eighth overall.

"It was really annoying to have the puncture when the left front went," Jordan, who turned 25 today, said.

The wet weather made conditions difficult at times. Picture: Joe Wright

"I need to keep doing what I'm doing tomorrow. It's a nice low pressure weekend for me."

Peugeot 208 driver Andy Scott sits in 12th place ahead of tomorrow, with multiple British rallycross champion Julian Godfrey - who impressed with his pace in practice - sitting in 29th position.

Alexander Hvaal was on usual sideways form. Picture: Joe Wright

A rear left puncture slowed his progress in heat one but he will be looking to bounce back on day two.

The Supercars will complete their third and fourth heats tomorrow, before the semi-finals and final.

After a busy day one, Andreas Bakkerud leads the Supercar class. Picture: Joe Wright

Elsewhere, Nelson Piquet Jr impressed on his first-ever visit to Lydden Hill.

The ex-Formula 1 racer competed in the RX Lites class and showed improved pace to win his third heat.

A little different from Formula 1 - here's Nelson Piquet Jr. Picture: Joe Wright

All four heats were completed in the TouringCar and Super1600 categories today with the all-important semi-finals and finals set to take place tomorrow.

Iergej Zagumennov claimed top championship points after day one in the Super1600 class and will start in pole position for the first semi-final.

Julian Godfrey impressed in his Fiesta. Picture: Joe Wright

And in the TouringCar class, Kjetil Larsen is leading the standings with Daniel Lundh (Volvo C30) second after winning heats two and four.

In the final action of the day, the Group B celebration race, Pat Doran's newly re-painted Ford RS200 caught fire on the Canterbury Straight, bringing out the red flags.

Each class will return to the track tomorrow morning, with action starting from 10.30am.

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